Order of the National Green Tribunal regarding violation of Environmental Clearance, 01/02/2021
Order of the National Green Tribunal in the matter of Sandeep Mittal Vs Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change & Others dated 01/02/2021.
The question for consideration was the steps to be taken for effectiveness of monitoring mechanism for compliance of conditions of Environmental Clearance (EC) as per Notification of September 14, 2006 under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
Faced with the grievance that there was flagrant violation of conditions of Environmental Clearance and adequate monitoring was not taking place, the NGT on October 30, 2018 directed that compliance of conditions of Environmental Clearance must be monitored on periodical basis, atleast once in a quarter. Further, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) was asked to review and strengthen the mechanism for the purpose and furnish a report.
The matter has been considered on several dates over the years and it has been repeatedly found that the mechanism for monitoring environmental norms was inadequate, as a result of which there was rampant violation of Environmental Clearance (EC) conditions, as noted by the NGT in several cases.
The NGT directed the MoEF&CC to take urgent measures to revamp the monitoring mechanism in a time bound manner in the interest of safety and health of the citizens and protection of the environment so as to ensure monitoring of compliance of EC conditions of atleast ‘red’ category industries, not less than once in a quarter. The MoEF&CC should give due attention for proper constitution of District Environment Impact Assessment Authority (DEIAAs) in the states to ensure the projects of category ‘B’ and ‘B-1’ are properly scrutinized.
The NGT order of February 1, 2021 asked the CPCB and the State PCB/PCCs to take measures to conduct monitoring of EC conditions at their level atleast once every quarter for all ‘Red’ category units, in the interest of safety of the citizens, which may also be looked into by the Chief Secretaries of the all states/UTs.